We are all aware of how much technology has changed the world, particularly in disciplines such as Customer Experience (CX), but while it has brought unimagined efficiencies and new ways of doing things, it has also resulted in a process view of the customer rather than a personal one.
According to Michael Renzon, CEO of inQuba, context is key to any CX initiative, allowing for a holistic view of the customer journey – from every touchpoint and engagement, to every piece of feedback. This context not only allows for better insights into customer behaviour, it drives personalised customer experience.
Speaking at the most recent of inQuba’s regular breakfast events, he engaged the attending industry leaders in a spirited discussion around the future of CX. These popular thought leadership events have become renowned in the industry for providing insight and a platform for an exchange of views.
“As CX practitioners, we are extremely good at listening and learning; talking about CX in the context of customer journey maps, feedback loops, etc.; but less effective at engaging in the customer story,” he says. “To have true engagement, we have to know when it is the right time to speak to the right people, and to say the right thing. Timing is essential, and that rests on understanding the customer’s context.”
Renzon explains that this requires a shift from customer journey mapping to customer context mapping, a concept he calls CXtended. “Having the customer’s voice at the center of every engagement allows for the context needed to reveal meaningful patterns. Instead of the journey, we need to think about each state in each stage of the journey. By proactively moving from data to insights, from passive processes to active engagement, the context necessary to create 360-degree engagement is created.”
He adds that the future of CX is in true personalisation. “Today, we have all the customer data we need to be reactive, but only a few companies are able to proactively guide customers in real-time, step-by-step, to great experiences. Imagine being able to anticipate your customers’ needs. This can be achieved easily, whatever industry you are in, simply by having insight into their context.”
For example, retailers could use the knowledge of a customer’s habits to provide personalised service and offers at the common times the individual visited a store; airlines could provide things like additional luggage allowances for mothers travelling with children; insurers could personalize the claims process.
“The list goes on. By changing customer journey mapping to customer context mapping, listening to each customer’s voice is simple, making learning and engaging with their story effortless. CX can’t deliver without having all of the content – and context – provided by the whole ecosystem. Customer journey maps and enterprise feedback loops aren’t dead, they just need to be CXtended,” Renzon concludes.